AUSTIN, TX—Austin Bomber, Mark Anthony Conditt, left behind a 25-minute video confession before he died after detonating an explosion in his vehicles as authorities cornered him on Wednesday, March 21.
Austin Police Chief, Brian Manley, called the recording an “outcry of a very challenged young man talking about challenges in his life that led him to this point.”
The serial bomber constructed the pipe bombs he used with “clothespin” or “mouse trap” switches. Investigators reported that the bombs were assembled with goods you could find at most hardware and sporting supply stores. The commonality of the materials lead investigators to comb stores in the area to investigate suspicious purchases.
Conditt was considered a person of interest by the time authorities found video evidence that he was the serial bomber. Surveillance footage from a South Austin FedEx store showed Conditt, disguised in pink gloves and a blonde wig topped with a baseball cap, mailing packages.
Using cellphone records, police were able to locate Conditt at the Round Rock hotel just north of Austin. While waiting for back up, Conditt attempted to flee the scene by driving off in his red SUV. The police pursued him down the I-35 feeder road until Conditt stopped the car. Before authorities could reach him, he detonated a bomb inside his car and was killed instantly. The blast also injured an officer who was pushed back during the explosion.
Officers and federal agents searched the bomber’s home in the Austin suburb of Pfugerville. As of Wednesday, they did not find any additional bombs at any stage of construction. Officers located supplies and components needed to make similar bombs to the ones used in the recent string of bombings, according to Fred Milanowski, a special agent in charge for the Houston division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Officials warned the public to still be on high alert as bombs could still be in the region.
Authorities have questioned Conditt’s roommates, who claim that they had no part in the bombings. The motive for the bombings is still unclear. In his video confession, Conditt describes the bombs he used, but failed to provide the reason behind the acts. He did not indicate involvement in terror organizations or say that this was motivated by hate.
“I know everybody is interested in a motive and understanding why. And we’re never going to be able to put a (rationale) behind these acts,” said Manly.